Day 237

The day started off pretty normal. I sipped coffee, I did French practice and I worked out. It was a pretty good start to a productive week.

I then spent the greater part of the day writing. Although I blog daily, I feel like I’ve forgotten how to use words. I wrote, I read what I wrote, I would change a word or two. Hours later I still wasn’t sure it was what I wanted it to be. So I took a little break from writing and tried a watercolour.

I found a ‘How to draw a bird with coloured pencils‘ on Youtube. I don’t own the pencils that they used in the video but I thought it might look nice as a watercolour.

I don’t have much to show for the day but it was very creatively satisfying. No idea what I’ll work on tomorrow.

I hope your week has started well. Good luck with new projects, new jobs and hard conversations. You’re an amazing person. Be proud of your achievements.


Day 98

It was a slow start to the day. I overslept by about an hour and a half, waking just in time to see hubby off to work. Once out of bed, I sat and sipped a coffee for what seemed too long. Workout time came and went and I sat sipping.

Eventually I got enough energy to do my workout. Unhappy with my performance yesterday I went for it pretty hard. I didn’t really allow myself any time to rest in between reps and it felt good.

Once my body had been worked out, it was time to workout my brain. French was next on the menu. I did better today. Powered through a number of timed levels and finished them all. I’m feeling confident that by next week I’ll be ready for the next set of words.

Today’s drawing challenge topic; shells. I love all things coastal so this draw was a fun one, and only a little bit intimidating. I found a beautiful photo of three shells to reference.

All challenge drawings can be found here…
40 Day Drawing Challenge on Three Peas, One Pod

I also worked on the first in a string of short stories I am planning on writing. There’s about 1000 words to go and the first instalment will be done. I have a fair idea about how I want the series to work but I haven’t found all the words I need, just yet.

Lunch, housework and a lovely hot shower filled my afternoon.

30 Day Blog Challenge – All my answers will be posted here.

Day 18: What book could you read over and over again?

I hate to say this but there isn’t a book like that in my world. I almost feel ashamed to say (because I want to be a writer) that I don’t really get into reading books anymore. Whenever I read my mind tends to drifts off and I barely take in what I’m reading or just end up skipping over parts.

When I was younger I loved reading scary stories written for teenagers and Baby Sitters Club books. I still have both in my collection. I also enjoyed a couple of Stephen King books and some of Edgar Allen Poe’s works.

I know that it’s important for me to read more and I have started by reading more blog posts from the people I follow. There have been lots of amazing, uplifting, encouraging and relatable stories. I’m always thankful for taking the time to read them.

I’m hoping to get a painting done tomorrow although I have no idea what I’d like to paint. Hopefully inspiration will visit me sometime before then. Knitting is also high on my list of things to do. In the near future, I might just start reading a book. Ooh!


Day 95

Today was a rest day. I’m not sure I like rest days. Every Sunday I’ve got into a bit of a funk and have felt really flat by the end of the day. I’m starting to wonder if it’s because I’m missing a workout. Could that be possible?

I started the day with French. I spent about 30 minutes learning and practising. I followed it up with about 30 minutes of writing. It was a nice start to the day.

Everything from 9.30 am until about 5 pm was taken up in WoW. I spent the morning with one friend and the afternoon with another. There were some laughs. It wasn’t the worst gaming day but still not close to being the best.

Once all that was done I knew it was time to draw. After yesterday’s flower attempt I wasn’t feeling that confident about another nature drawing and it shows. Today’s topic; leaves. I found it really hard to focus on the tutorial and what my hand was doing. That’s why there is only one leaf.

All challenge drawings can be found here…
40 Day Drawing Challenge on Three Peas, One Pod

30 Day Blog Challenge – All my answers will be posted here.

Day 15: Write 15 interesting facts about yourself

  1. I taught myself to touch type by listening to music and typing the lyrics as the songs played.
  2. I started learning piano at age 4 and was taught to play by ear, instead of reading music. I eventually went on to learn how to read music. I prefer to play by ear now.
  3. In my early 20’s I loved doing long road trips in my 1983 Subaru touring wagon. I miss that car.
  4. All my life I’ve had the same dream about a big black crow trying to fly into the house to get me. It scared me as a child. It scared me as an adult.
  5. I was a radio announcer for a year and voiced a commercial that was played in the USA.
  6. The first instrument I bought for myself was a bass guitar. I still have it.
  7. I started primary school half way through the year. With my birthday in June, I was too young to start at the beginning of the year.
  8. I consider myself an empath. I can sense emotions and feel physical pain from the people around me.
  9. I have some sort of dream psychosis where I hallucinate spiders and people as I’m waking up. The worst was when I opened my eyes to see a man kneeling beside the bed. I screamed and it vanished.
  10. I have had two opera singing lessons and was told I was a natural. I moved and never took another singing lesson again.
  11. When I was 12, I had a bone tumour removed from my arm. When the bone grew back it pinched the muscle and it makes my arm sore sometimes.
  12. At a local Folk Festival, I played guitar and sang with an actor that was in Priscilla, Queen of the Desert, as we sat by a fire at the back of a pub.
  13. I wrote a book when I was 16. Computers were new and when I was moving the files, trying to get organised, I managed to lose three crucial chapters. I thought it was a sign I wasn’t supposed to write the story and deleted the whole thing.
  14. I will only sing at ‘karaoke’ on cruise ships. I’m sure it has something to do with the overpriced cocktails.
  15. I’ve been ‘agoraphobic’ for about 8 years and have only left the house when I really have to. It’s been over a year now since I’ve gone out.

I’m not sure what to do tomorrow. Maybe I should start with a workout or just wake up and do all the housework. Why is there always so much housework?

May your housework be done swiftly and may your heart be filled with joy.


Day 94

I jumped out of bed and got straight to French. I’m feeling much better about the travel words. I seem to take about 4 days for things to really get in my brain. Something I need to remember when I learn the next set of words so I don’t get so frustrated.

Inspired by getting to French so quickly, I decided to jump into all my other morning tasks quickly. I worked out, I showered and then I hit a wall. Everything after that seemed to drag along at a snails pace in an unproductive way. My morning enthusiasm waned into a zombie-like state.

I’ve spent all week taking ‘looking up’ photos of the sun for the Let’s do 52 – 52 Week Photography  challenge. There have been pictures of the sun on its own, through cloud, through trees, centred and barely in the shot. There were a lot of shots I really liked but this one was my favourite. I love the contrast of dark and light with the little colourful light flares.

Full-sized picture on Flickr
All Let’s Do 52 Photo Challenge Photos on Three Peas, One Pod

For today’s drawing challenge topic; some flowers. This was supposed to be a fun draw for me but it wasn’t. I had been looking forward to it and decided to work in colour. The pencils and paper did not want to work together. I could barely see the colours and the paper got pretty beat up. I haven’t felt creative enough to redo it, so, here it is. Better luck next time.

I did give the drawing a little enhance in GIMP so you could actually see the flowers. They just didn’t stand up on their own sadly. This has prompted a shopping trip for pencils and good paper.

All challenge drawings can be found here…
40 Day Drawing Challenge on Three Peas, One Pod

The only other creative (and it’s not feeling very creative) was my 20 minutes of writing. I’m not technically writing, I’m editing and rewriting but it really needs to be done before I venture further into this tale.

30 Day Blog Challenge – All my answers will be posted here.

Day 14: What is your earliest memory?

It was around 6.30 am and I thought… ‘Why am I awake at 6.30 am.’

For real though, I find this question difficult to answer because I don’t remember a lot from when I was young. I’ve also had short term memory problems since my mum passed away when I was 21, so I feel like I’m in a constant fog of confusion and uncertainty.

I find it hard to tell if it’s a memory of a situation I’ve been in, if it’s a memory of a photo or if it’s something I’ve completely made up.

Tomorrow is a rest day. My workout body is looking forward to it. My workout brain is not. I don’t want to say it but I think I enjoy working out. What a strange world I now live in.


Day 92

I woke a little before 7 am and was tempted to go back to sleep. That temptation didn’t last long when my dog, Homer, decided it was time to go outside. Morning had started and I didn’t wanna. I’d love to bounce out of bed and get my French and drawing done before hubby even leaves but most days it’s just me scowling over a cup of coffee and wondering why mornings even exist.

Once hubby had left for work, I jumped straight into my workout. I wasn’t fuelled by French rage today and finished right on the 30 minute mark. My body was feeling fatigued and made some of the exercises harder than they should have been. Still a good work out though.

I was going to start French when I got distracted looking for inspiration for my next painting or what I like to call ‘putting off doing French.’ Knowing that this was what I was doing, I put an end to my search and dived into the cold French pool. The water was lukewarm. What? All the words I didn’t know yesterday have actually been making it through my brain matter. I remembered words! Huzzah!!

I spent a good while doing the ‘travel’ level and then did some timed practices. I did well enough that I wanted to keep trying, I did bad enough that I wanted to keep trying, I just kept trying. I can happily say that there was no French rage to be had today. Good thing I’d already done my workout.

I was excited about today’s drawing challenge topic; Owls. When I was a teenager we had an owl come and visit every night. It would sit on the clothes line. It was a cute little brown owl. I had originally thought of drawing a baby owl because they are adorable but then I found a picture, which lead to a video, which was the inspiration for the little family of owls.

All challenge drawings can be found here…
40 Day Drawing Challenge on Three Peas, One Pod

I didn’t feel like working on my story today or I didn’t feel like editing my story today. I did it anyway. I worked on it for about 30 minutes, adding and deleting things before giving it over to a grammar checker. I was nervous. I barely remember anything I learned about writing when I was in school. Luckily, I wasn’t far off the mark. I only had to rewrite a couple of sentences and fix a couple of spelling mistakes. There’s still so much to revise and check. This could take days before I’m back to writing new material.

I made some good progress on my new knitting project; a beanie. I got through the lower ribbing and will start on the body soon. Finishing the top seems scary but there’s only one way to learn how to do it, just do it!

30 Day Blog Challenge – All my answers will be posted here.

Day 12: Bullet point your whole day

  • Woke up
  • Worked out
  • Did 30 minutes of French
  • Drew a family of owls
  • Edited the story I’ve been writing
  • Knit for 2 hours
  • Did the dishes
  • Played mobile games
  • Ate dinner
  • Finished this post

I think the bad feels are starting to lift. It’s definitely easier to deal with bad feels when I’m neck deep in creative and learning.

Bonne journée.


Day 91

I got out of bed on time and wanted to get straight to my French. That didn’t happen. We had forgotten to write a shopping list and had to get that done before hubby left for work. We finally got through it and I finally got to French.

UGH! I’ve just started learning new ‘travel’ words. I cannot remember a thing. It is so incredibly frustrating. I know that I’ve struggled at the beginning of each new topic but this one feel so much harder. Did I mention, ugh?!? By the time I was done, I was almost in tears. I was so frustrated. What better way to fix that, then with a workout.

I angrily worked out, pushing myself hard and fast and harder and faster. I ended up finishing my workout 7 minutes faster than normal. It made me think I’d forgotten something but I was just fuelled by French rage. If I can keep that level of rage, I could easily add another 15 minutes to the workout. HA!

I felt more human once the workout was done and got straight into drawing. It’s so much easier to do when I have something I need to draw. Thank you, drawing challenge.

Today’s task was to draw a dollhouse. The idea seemed hard but I found a great little dollhouse photo to reference. It took about an hour to draw and 30 minutes to colour. It seems a bit time consuming for a dollhouse.

All challenge drawings can be found here…
40 Day Drawing Challenge on Three Peas, One Pod

After lunch I thought about writing. Then I thought about it some more. Then I spent a little more time thinking about it. I then convinced myself that I was watching a French movie on TV because I’m learning French and it would be helpful. It was just an excuse to not write. For two hours of trying, I got about 20 minutes of writing done.

The biggest problem I see with writing my story at the moment is I’m still not entirely sure where it’s going. Heck, I’m not even sure what genre I’m writing about. I mean, at this point, it could be a romance, a horror, a thriller or something that should just be turned into a tele-movie. Tomorrow I’ll do a read through and edit. See if I can gain some clarity for my own project.

After two failed attempts at knitting a pair of gloves for myself, I started work on a different project. I’m pretty sure it’s the cheap yarn that is making this almost impossible BUT I will endure and see if I can make something cool anyways. I know I have one mistake already but if I can continue with no new mistakes, it should be okay, I hope.

Tomorrow I’ll do more of the same.

30 Day Blog Challenge – All my answers will be posted here.

Day 11: Put your ipod on shuffle. Write down the first 10 songs.

  1. Marilyn Manson – Deep Six
  2. Twenty One Pilots – Tear In My Heart
  3. Alpine – Villages
  4. Simple Day – One That I Want (Grease Cover)
  5. Steppenwolf – Magic Carpet Ride
  6. Meatloaf – Paradise by the Dashboard Light
  7. Ash Grunwald – Mind Plays Tricks
  8. Muse – Dead Inside
  9. Episodes – She
  10. Custard – Girls Like That

Thanks for reading this post. You are an amazing person, with a smile that could light up a dark room.


Day 90

Hubby was back to work today and life continued on as planned. I got my French lesson out of the way before hubby had even left. I started on a new group of ‘travel’ words. Even though a lot of words are very similar to English, I fear I don’t remember a single one.

Soon as hubby was on his way to work, I worked out. It was nice.

I then moved onto the creatives. Seeing I have been making a commitment to drawing daily, I thought it’d be a great time to start a drawing challenge. I saved the 40 Day Drawing Challenge on  Pinterest months ago. I had to draw a bird or birds. I haven’t had much luck with bird attempts in the past, so I decided to stick to drawing only one.

All challenge drawings can be found here…
40 Day Drawing Challenge on Three Peas, One Pod

Writing was a bit of a challenge today. I probably wrote about 5 minutes from the first 20 minutes of sitting here. I flipped between the two stories I’m working on and neither really felt right. I pushed on for an amount of time that I felt was comfortably 20 minutes of writing then decided to sing.

Singing was fun. I use the website SingSnap for all my karaoke fun. I have been refining my favourites list by just… singing the songs. If I don’t want to sing it, it’s off the list. I sang, I recorded and while listening to the playbacks, I worked on one of my stories. My singing was inspiring me to write. It was a weird feeling but I got more writing done. That made me feel good.

A new week of The Happy List has just started. I have given myself a slightly easier week by extending deadlines and removing a couple of repetitions. I still feel the creative is pretty heavy which will help keep me focused or distracted or both.

30 Day Blog Challenge – All my answers will be posted here.

Day 10: What is your guilty pleasure?

Alright, stop! Collaborate and listen.

Yes! If you know what I just did there, you already know why this is my guilty pleasure.

I cannot count the number of times that I have busted out the first verse of that song in reply to what someone has said. Which brings me to a very good point; nobody knows the second verse of that song. If you do, can we be best friends?

My goal for this week; just keep powering through. Good luck and good power to those needing a little boost this week.


Day 87

I wasn’t happy with my creative today. Some of it worked. Some of it didn’t. Some of it is unfinished.

I started the day a little before 7 am and got my French revision done. I’m feeling confident about moving on to new words.

After hubby left for work, I got my workout done. It was the last one for the week and I did more than I had to. Now I’m officially old I kept forgetting what I was up to, so did things twice.

Then I moved onto writing. I did a word check on my first story and I’ve written about 6,500 words. My second story only has 650 words, so that was the one I worked on. I’ve had this story, or series of stories, in mind for sometime. I’m aiming for about 2500 words for the story. Almost there. Woo! Writing will be on hold until Tuesday.

I then spent some time singing. I would record a song and while listening to the playback, I started drawing. It was a really nice mix of arts.

I dragged my feet for an hour, avoiding painting like it was a spider. I went outside and took some photos of the celery and leek.

Then I finally got a picture for this weeks  Let’s do 52 – 52 Week Photography : Movement. This tap needs to be fixed. If it’s not turned off really tight there is a slow drip, drip, drip. I set out to capture the drip for a ‘movement’ photo and 15 minutes later I had this shot. 

Full-sized picture on Flickr

Then it was time to paint. I got myself set up and painted the sky. I like painting the sky. Then the first row of trees that would line the mountain top. That’s where it got hard. I started to paint thick tree coverage and it didn’t work. I then spent at least an hour trying to layer the paints. Eventually I gave up and moved to the lower half of the picture.

The ocean was the easiest part to paint. I kept it the same as my other Akaroa paintings. Moving on to the boat was a challenge. I don’t think I was waiting long enough for paint to dry before trying to make the next layer. I like the wires, windows, blue accent and yellow on the boat.

By the time I got to the lighthouse I was fed up with my progress. I smacked some of the paint on, left all of the drawing underneath and called it a day. I might try and fix it, it might just be a Frankenstein. I feel like I’ve taken two steps back with this painting.

Unfinished art is unfinished.

30 Day Blog Challenge – All my answers will be posted here.

Day 7: What were your favourite childhood toys?

Barbie is at the top of that list. I would get at least two barbies for my birthday and Christmas. I also had an assortment of accessories like mansion, caravan, camp set, TV studio, shops and pool. I still have the collection and often think of getting them out to play.

I also loved Lego. My favourite set was a pirate set with pirate, boat, island, shark, treasure chest and gold coins. I remember playing with them one time and the shark had managed to get to the treasure chest and ate all the gold coins. (I stuffed the gold coins in it’s mouth.) The shark never returned the coins.

Lastly, I had a Cabbage Patch Kid doll called Tom. He had curly brown hair and I adored him, When I was a teenager I donated him to charity. I have always regretted doing that.

Tomorrow is a rest day, with no big creative plans. I might do a little knitting if the feeling takes me.

Happy weekend!


Day 86

It’s my birthday and I’ll cry if I want to…. except, I don’t want to. I’ve had a fantastic day. I woke up around 7 am and rolled out of bed. It felt early for a birthday wake up but because it was my birthday, I could get hubby to make me a coffee before he did anything else.

Once he was off to work, I worked out. WHAT? This is the first time in 38 years that I have worked out on my birthday. I have never even worked out the day before or after my birthday. In fact, I’m not even sure I’ve worked out in the months surrounding my birthday. It was a great work out. I pushed hard but not too hard.

First thing I did after that was my French revision. I got through it with only a handful of mistakes. Then it was on to writing and it must have been a birthday miracle because my words were back. I had no trouble working on my story. I did about 30 minutes of writing.

I spent a few hours in WoW with a friend. He paid for my sub, so I kinda thought I should. We had lots of laughs as always. It was a nice way to pass the day.

By early afternoon I was ready for lunch and getting back into a pile of creative. After a bowl of leftover pasta I started drawing. I drew another picture that I’d like to paint and it wasn’t from Akaroa. Gasp!! It’s true. I’m going to cast my creative vision a little further than Akaroa. I still have some issues getting the right perspective but I think it was a pretty good attempt.

Before dinner I started work on my knitting. It’s going pretty well. I’ve been keeping track of what I’m up to and it’s noticeable. The double moss stitch is finally looking straight and neat. Woo!

Seeing it was my birthday dinner, we had a delicious cheese platter, with roasted veggies, pickled onions, cabanossi and crackers. I washed it down with a couple of glasses of white wine. The only thing that would have made tonight perfect is if wifey was here enjoying it with us.

Tomorrow will be my last chance to paint before the weeks end. I already have a harbour shot of Akaroa drawn, so that’s what I’ll attempt.

Today was a good day.

30 Day Blog Challenge – All my answers will be posted here.

Day 6: What is your zodiac sign and does it fit your personality?

It most certainly does and what a great question for my birthday. I have already answered about being the ‘Cancer’ sign in my last writing challenge, so be ready to be copy and pasted, hard.

‘There are a number of things that I can identify with; being intuitive and being able to read people’s emotions, being passionate and loyal, being creative and resilient, tuned to nature and drawn to the water to name a few. ‘


Day 85

I woke up just after 6 am and tried to get back to sleep but it didn’t work. I gave in to being awake and got up just after 6.30 am. It was still dark. I thought it might be a nice time to get some writing done but that didn’t happen. I did do an early French revision. I think my brain felt sharper and I got through each level much faster. I’ll start a new group of words next Tuesday.

After hubby had left for work I did my workout. I pushed hard and I have continued to feel it all day. I think I’m still clenching some of the muscles in question. Sleep will be a welcomed body relaxant.

Painting and Knitting WIP

I decided to draw first. I took inspiration from another photo from Akaroa. I drew it straight onto a canvas, so I can paint it. There is a lot of detail in the lighthouse and the boat which is quiet intimidating but I’ll attempt it over the next two days.

Then I started my writing practice and nothing happened. I tried to write the next paragraph and…. nothing happened. Uh oh! It has all been flowing so nicely for over a week and today the well was dry. I figured I’d start a second writing project but after three short paragraphs, I was also stumped. This ordeal was about 20 minutes long, so I called it a day.

I moved onto knitting. My new method for keeping track worked like a charm. I always knew what I was supposed to be knitting. Sadly, I made lots of weird little mistakes that mean it looks a bit odd in a few places. I am going to continue though. I’m hoping that by the time it’s stitched together and has a hand stuffed in it, it will look fine. We’ll just say it looks fine.

Lastly I spent some time singing before hubby got home. I wish I was a more consistent singer. I guess practice would help with that.

I feel like I didn’t do much with my day but I did all the things I needed to. I’ll give myself a break tomorrow because it’s my birthday.

30 Day Blog Challenge – All my answers will be posted here.

Day 5: What are your favourite comfort foods and why?

The first would have to be lasagne. This was the first dish I learned to cook. It’s taken me many years to come to my current recipe. The meat sauce is slow cooked for 4 hours and is packed full of veggies. Although you’d never notice because it still tastes so meaty.

Next would have to be a gnocchi topped chicken, mushroom and leek pie. The filling is so light and creamy and the gnocchi gives it the hearty feeling you’re looking for with comfort food.

The next is roasted chicken with a southern spice rub and potato salad with apple. The spice rub is smokey and spicy and warms your soul. The potato salad brings much need freshness and relief from the spice.

Now depending on the type of comfort I need, I could simply enjoy a handful of M&Ms… just because.

Did you know you look really good when you smile? I hope you’re having a magical week.